Are you starting college this year? Are you currently in the process of packing, and thinking something along the lines of, “How in the world will I ever get all of this stuff into HALF a room?” If so, don’t worry, I’ve been there. In fact, I’m always there around this time of year. I always feel like i’ve completely overpacked and there is no way all my stuff will fit in my dorm room unless the stars align, my room suddenly grows by double its size, or if somehow all my stuff shrinks. Organizing a dorm room can be so hard. You have trouble figuring out where to start, and you often become so overwhelmed in the first two minutes of being in your room for the first time. However, effective organizing can maximize space, make keeping the sides of the room separate, and keep the room cleaner throughout the year. Here are my twelve quick tips for dorm organization.
1) Under Bed Storage | I cannot stress enough how much you need to use the area under your bed to keep items. If you loft your bed as high as possible, you can create an awesome area underneath, doubling the floor space in your room, while also creating an awesome place for you to hangout and study. I don’t typically loft by bed this high, instead I loft it only enough to fit drawers, a laundry bag, and son plastic bins under it. Regardless of what route you choose, under bed storage is number one when it comes to dorm organization.
2) Stackable Bins | Bed, Bath, and Beyond has some really great plastic, stackable bins. I would suggest that you pick up some stackable bins to store any extra school supplies, clothing, or pretty much anything you may need (like cleaning supplies).
3) Organize with Floor Space in Mind | Make sure you’re being mindful of floor space when you’re setting up your room. How many people can sit on your floor? How would your floor work for a game night or movie night? Be mindful of this.
4) Consult Your Roommate | Make sure that you talk to your roommate about how to set up the room. You want to live comfortably with your roommate, and make sure you’re both happy with the room set up. If your roommate feels like you’re hogging the room, or hates how you’ve set something up, it could potentially cause a roommate conflict. Be mindful that you’re living with someone.
5) Less is More | DO NOT OVERPACK. Consult your roommate about what each of you are bringing, and see if there are items that you could share. This will save space because you won’t have two mini fridges or two microwaves to store. As an individual, do not bring things you don’t ever use. Think about items that are suggested for college, and think about the likelihood of you using them, if you’re unsure, don’t buy it until you’ve moved in and realized you need it.
6) Utilize Dull Surfaces | The top of your microwave? Just empty space waiting to be utilized. Put a coffee pot on top or a tea kettle, or put your bowls and plates on top. Here’s an example of well-utilized dull space:
7) Get Your Drawers Organized | Instead of just dumping everything into the drawers on move-in day, file your clothing. This means that you should fold your tops or jeans, then place them in the drawer vertically with the folded edge facing up.
8) Clip Cords to Desk | Make sure cords are easily accessible. One way to do this is to attach clips to your desk, and pull cords through the silver part to keep cords separate and ready to use.
9) Hang Your Laundry Bag or Put Under Your Bed | Either hang your laundry bag behind your door or in your closet, or place it under your bed. Putting your laundry bag in dead space that isn’t really utilized so that it won’t take up a corner or other useful space in the room.
10) Figure Out the Best Layout For You | You should be mindful of what layout is best for you. If you walk down a dorm hall, you will notice almost no two room are the same. This is because each set of roommates and each individual is different. You have to figure out what will work best for you, and set up your room accordingly.
11) Make a Home for Every Item | Each item in your room should have a designated spot, and it should only leave it’s spot when its being used. This will ensure you don’t have stuff piling up on the floors or the desk tops.
12) Choose a Day of the Week to Clean | I choose Friday afternoons to clean my room because I’m tired from a week of classes, and most my friends are still in class so I can’t go do anything yet. Instead of napping, I tidy up my room. Anything that got a little out of control during the week returns to order come Friday by 1 p.m. Having a day and time that you always clean makes for a routine that will actually ensure your room is in good shape.
How do you get organized?